Living Wage

A living wage is defined as the minimum income necessary for a worker to meet their basic needs like food, housing, and other essential needs such as clothing. The goal of a living wage is to allow a worker to afford a basic but decent standard of living through employment without government subsidies.

Minimum wage is different because it can fail to meet the requirements for a basic quality of life which leaves the worker to rely on government programs for additional income. In one way the living wage is similar to the minimum wage in that it is a price floor for labor. A livable family wage is one sufficient to not only support oneself but also to raise a family.

These terms are important because you will hear them again in the fight to raise the minimum wage and to get the workers’ right to a livable wage advanced. Here are Georgia’s living wage numbers as an average.

          Georgia Living Wage

  • Total required income before taxes: $54,964
  • Estimated housing costs: $10,932
  • Estimated food costs: $6,832

The Median income in this District is $53,479 which means half of the people make higher than this and Half the people make lower.

You can find the living wage in your specific area on the MIT website below.
https://livingwage.mit.edu/

In 2019, the Department of Health and Human Services set the federal poverty level at $25,750 for a family of four. That’s equivalent to $12.38 per hour for a full-time worker. A worker making the minimum wage of $7.20 per hour would be below the poverty level.
Every person should be able to make a living wage when working 40 hours per week. Lifting struggling workers across the country helps all Americans.